WEB ETHICS: Summit Offers Code of Ethics for eHealth
The first draft of the Internet Healthcare Coalition-endorsed "International e-Health Code of Ethics" was released Friday, offering both the "insights and reflections" of the e-Health Ethics Summit -- which convened in Washington, D.C., Jan. 31- Feb. 2. The e-Health Ethics Summit Steering Group advised the Hastings Center, an independent, not-for-profit research institute that reviewed and organized the minutes of the summit into the current draft code. The draft in its current form has not yet been formally endorsed by the summit. But Summit Co-chair Dr. Ahmad Risk said, "Through a democratic process we have offered the world a truly international, living Code of e-Health Ethics," adding, "Continued review and public consultation will only make it stronger and more widely accepted." The draft was created with input from all key Internet Health constituencies, including consumers and patients, health care providers, ethicists, governmental agencies, Internet representatives, special interest groups and pharmaceutical and medical device company officials. Summit Co-chair Dr. Helga Rippen remarked, "Never before have we witnessed such broad consensus on such an important topic." The draft can be accessed in its entirety with additional notes and definitions at the Internet Healthcare Coalition's Web site, www. ihealthcoalition.org. Formal endorsement will occur after an eight-week public comment period. Following public comment and consultation, the draft Code will be revised for final publication around May 15 (Internet Healthcare Coalition release, 2/18).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.